Adam Lyth’s diligent 73 went unrewarded as Yorkshire lost a low-scoring thriller against Division Two leaders Sussex at Hove, bowled out for 161 in pursuit of 183 just after tea on day three. 

Yorkshire lost their second match in six in this year’s Vitality County Championship, losing their last four wickets for the addition of just three runs in 4.2 overs, crumbling from 158-6. 

England Test seamer Ollie Robinson did the late damage with three wickets before injured Ben Coad was run out trying to scramble a single into the short point region, as Matthew Revis tried to steal the strike.

Fynn Hudson-Prentice hit the stumps at the striker’s end.

Robinson finished with a season’s best 4-42 from 17 overs, and the late collapse started when he got Lyth caught behind, the Yorkshire opener having hit nine fours in 152 balls. 

Yorkshire claim three points having made the early running in this fixture, and they looked understandably crestfallen at the end. 

The visitors attempted to recover from 45-4 at lunch and 76-5 shortly afterwards.

Adam Lyth

Picture by John Heald. Adam Lyth bats at Hove today and didn’t deserve to be on the losing side.

Sussex started this fixture 18 points clear of Yorkshire in sixth and have extended that gap to 34.

Yorkshire again played some good cricket, but they didn’t win the key periods.

George Hill impressed with seven wickets, Ben Coad with six and Joe Root and Lyth with respective half-centuries. Coad didn’t bowl today and batted at 11 because of a bad back. 

Sussex started day three on 194-7, with Coad, Hill and Jordan Thompson all finishing with three wickets apiece. The latter two shared today’s wickets. 

But wickets continued to fall, as Yorkshire made a nightmare start to their chase, slipping to 45-4 inside 15 overs at lunch. 

Lyth took two boundaries off England seamer Ollie Robinson in the first over and was strong on the drive through the innings, as you would expect.

But Sussex hit back with gusto.


Picture by John Heald. Ollie Robinson (l) and his Sussex team-mates celebrate victory.

Left-armer Sean Hunt had Fin Bean caught low down at fourth slip by Tom Haines for a duck, leaving the score at 12-1 in the fourth over after umpires Hassan Adnan and David Millns got together to discuss whether or not the catch had carried.

Shan Masood, on four, followed shortly afterwards when he edged Robinson behind – 21-2.

Root was trapped lbw playing around his front pad by Danny Lamb for 10, leaving concerns in the visiting camp at 44-3 in the 14th over. And when Hill edged behind off Fynn Hudson-Prentice for one, Yorkshire were on the back foot four wickets down and still needing 138 to win.

Runs were at a premium in the early stages of the afternoon as Lyth and James Wharton looked to steady the ship. And they did to an extent, sharing 31.

Unfortunately, however, Wharton fell for 18 when he played on to Hunt, an inside-edge diverting onto leg-stump via his thigh – 76-5 after 26 overs, with 107 still needed.

Run-scoring throughout this fixture proved a tricky job in bowler-dominated conditions, and while a watchful approach was the way forwards, Lyth and Jonny Tattersall did briefly put their foot down approximately half an hour before tea.

They took five fours in an eight-ball period against the off-spinner Jack Carson and the seam of Hudson-Prentice, advancing the score to 117-5 in the 37th over.

In that time, Lyth reached a much-needed fifty off 102 balls – the fourth time he has reached that milestone this season, including two centuries. To get there, he actually edged Carson to third for four, with first slip Tom Clark seemingly getting a hand on a chance which could have left Yorkshire at 109-6. 

George Hill

Picture by John Heald. George Hill bowls Ollie Robinson this morning.

But the visitors did lose their sixth wicket when Tattersall (18) swept Carson to short fine-leg – 121-6 in the 39th, 62 still needed. 

Yorkshire made it through to tea without further alarm at 140-6, needing 43 more with Revis in the early stages of his innings alongside Lyth on 63.

Lyth then drove an early boundary off a Lamb full toss before Revis worked Robinson through mid-wicket for another to take the score to 151-6 – 32 needed.

But just when you thought that Yorkshire had broken the back of the chase,   Robinson changed the complexion with three wickets without addition as Yorkshire fell from 158-6 in the 53rd over to 158-9 after 55.

The first of those was vital. He forced Lyth to glove behind a short ball before a pulling Thompson was caught brilliantly by a diving Carson at long-leg.

Dom Leech was then bowled, leaving Revis on 13 alongside injured Coad as Yorkshire last hope with 25 still to win. 

Coad was then run out, sparking wild celebrations from the home players and members.

Picture by John Heald. Fin Bean (r) helps George Hill remove Tom Alsop this morning.

Hill claimed two of the three Sussex wickets to fall this morning, including Tom Alsop for a fine and determined six-hour 86 – the highest score of a match.

Sussex added 33 runs for the loss of three wickets, with Thompson claiming the other. 

Thompson’s strike was the first of the morning when Carson was caught at cover by a diving Wharton before Hill had Alsop caught at third slip by Bean and bowled Robinson, with middle and off-stumps out of the ground.

Coad didn’t take the field this morning because of a stiff back.

As Yorkshire missed out on victory, new signing Vishwa Fernando watched on from the sidelines.

The Sri Lankan fast bowler has penned an overseas deal for the next three Championship matches and will debut at Northamptonshire, starting on Friday. 

He warmed up with his new team-mates this morning and will need to make an immediate impact if Yorkshire are to have designs on promotion.

Vishwa Fernando

Picture by John Heald. Vishwa Fernando warming up this morning.

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